Bruce's Shed 2019

Bruce’s Shed
Rathdowney QLD 4287
Booking required – see link below
10am – 4pm
House Open Style
Wild Mountains Trust Open Day: Booking required
Housing Type
Standalone House
Project Type
New Build
Bruce Teakle, Richard Zoomers, Geoffrey Smith and many volunteers
Number of bedrooms
Number of bathrooms
Open with support of
Wild Mountains Trust, Nature Play

Bruce’s Shed was the first building on the Wild Mountains site, constructed as the starting point for living and working while the ideas and other structures for the environmental education centre evolved. Tallowwood and Yellow Stringybark trees were cut on site in 1988 with some milled onsite with a chainsaw and others trucked to the local mill to construct the mortise and tenon post and beam and its cladding and loft flooring. Secondhand pine was used to line the ceiling.

While the building does not perform as a passive solar home, it does demonstrate traditional building methods and construction without any power tools (there was no power on site). Its sustainability is its modest scale, low-embodied energy and response to the site and a tiny budget.

One of the founding families lived in the house for 10 years and their second son, who was born in the shed, is now apprentice on the house being built for his parents at Geordies.

Book tickets here to visit Bruce’s Shed and other houses at Wild Mountains.

To find out about other homes and ammenities that will be open for Sustainable House Day click here

This home is supported by



Years Open
Total cost of home when constructed
Very little as most materials came from the site.
BAL Rating
Roofing materials
Metal (Zincalume)
Wall materials (external and internal)
Hardwood slabs sourced and milled on site
Window and door types
Casement. All windows are secondhand
Recycled and reused
Kitchen cabinets
Rubber underlay, carpet, wood stove,
Sustainable materials
Sourcing timber onsite and constructing with hand powered tools ensured a very minimal embodied energy in the building. The roof sheeting was probably the most energy-intensive material. Almost every element not made from timber on site was secondhand.
Healthy home
Cross flow ventilation
All electric home
Renewable energy
Solar PV off-grid
Size of PV system
Part of the Wild Mountains solar off-grid
Water heating
Wood fire wetback
Passive heating cooling
Cross ventilation
Water harvesting and saving
Above ground rainwater storage
Type: Concrete
Size: 33,000L next to Bruce's but also 4 x 44,000L linked in from Main Hall
Underground rainwater storage
Type: Concrete cast insitu
Grey water system
Composting toilet in the Main Hall.
Waste Reduction
Compost all food scraps
Plastic free household
Swap with friends and neighbours